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Case Mod - In Progress Experiment Nr. 5 (Final pics on page 8)

Discussion in 'Project Logs' started by p0Pe, 17 Feb 2014.

  1. p0Pe

    p0Pe gief cake?

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    Well hello there guys!

    Experiment Nr. 5
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    Thought it would be time to finally get this thing lifted. I have had the case since last year, and have been playing around with it and brainstormed about what to do with it.

    It is going to be my fift proper CaseMod (1: DnA, 2: PC-Beto, 3: Project M8, 4: Project N.V), and will include a lot of techniques that I learned trough these mods. The case is a CaseLabs S3 mini itx case that CaseLabs was kind enough to ship me when it first came out.

    The case is around the same size as the popular Bitfenix prodigy, and I have gotten a pedestal shipped too, that I will use for most of the cooling compartments.

    But lets start off with a parts list:

    Motherboard: ASUS Impact
    CPU: Intel I7 4770K
    GPU: ASUS GTX780
    RAM: Corsair Dominator 16 gb
    SSD: 2xCorsair Neutron GTX 256gb
    HDD: WD 2tb green
    PSU: Corsair RM1000

    Watercooling will be all EK, exept for the fittings which is provided by Bitspower.

    But no one reads these intro´s anyways, so lets dive into it!

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    First of all, the case:

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    And here it is on my desk, along with a bitfenix prodigy M.

    Motherboard tray

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    Here you see the ASUS Impact Motherboard on the tray. It really is a nice and tidy little card!

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    I am going to connect 3 drives to the build. Two ssd´s, and a hdd. Everyone knows that sata cables can be a pain in the bum to route trough a build, so I wanted to hide these as much as possible.

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    The cables goes directly under the motherboard, and will connect to the ssd´s which I plan on mounting beneath the motherboard tray.

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    Ram and one of the SSD´s from Corsair!

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    This is how I planned on mounting them. Wires will go under the motherboard to get as much of it out of the way as possible.

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    Milling the holes. Ohh the joy of a manual mill!

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    And how the cables will run.

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    Both of them semi installed.

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    Now, I wanted to mount the one HDD to the side of the centerrail of the case, and doing so in a stealthy way. So a cover was made for the harddrive. Please ignore the two pumps, this was from an earlier concept.

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    3D printed a prototype of the hdd cover. The final version will be milled from aluminum.

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    Printed out a drawing of the sidepanel modifications.

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    Double checking that the harddrive fits:D

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    After drilling, forward to filling.

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    And done! Rubber grommets installed.

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    And harddisk installed!

    That was it for now! I am preparing a few renders of the concept, and working on the pedestal on the moment, so that will be the next updates!
     
    Last edited: 6 May 2015
  2. Egami

    Egami Why is the dremel on fire?

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    Another p0Pe project! Will be watching this one for sure!
     
  3. Maki role

    Maki role Dale you're on a roll... Staff

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    Well now, definitely getting in early on this one!
     
  4. saxovtsmike

    saxovtsmike Member

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    Sata routing is awsome.
    subbed
     
  5. Nexxo

    Nexxo Queue Jumper

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    Yeah, SATA routing is inspired. Thanks for the tip! :thumb: Coincidentally I'm going to mount my two SSDs on the back of the mobo in a very similar way. Great minds think alike. :D

    Like the look of the case!
     
  6. Meelobee

    Meelobee New Member

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    The 3d design on the panels is very cool :) Will they be smooth, or keep the rough surface like the disk enclosure?
     
  7. Hukkel

    Hukkel James' minion

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    Good luck with your project. Seeing your earlier projects I think it is safe to assume this will be awesome :D
     
  8. KoSoVaR^

    KoSoVaR^ Professional Sleever & Modder

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    dat cable manegment thow :D!
     
  9. Cheapskate

    Cheapskate Insane? or just stupid?

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    Looks like this will be fun. I'm not a fan of the decorative design because it reminds me of corrupted model surfaces. -I had a few flashbacks already.
     
  10. p0Pe

    p0Pe gief cake?

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    I will try and deliver something worty to watch then:D

    Welcome aboard :D

    Thanks! I hate sata cables so I am quite satisfied with it myself.

    Thanks! I actually thought about swapping on of the ssd´s for a 2.5" 2 tb hdd. Would make for a neat little setup:D

    They will be totally smooth. I plan on having them milled from 14 mm thick aluminum plates:)

    Thanks! I will try to live up to that:p

    Thanks:D

    Then just imagine how fun it will be to mill:p

    A quick update before I move onto the pedestal that will house most of the watercooling gear! :)

    Had to prep the panels and remove some of the mounting gear from the existing sides. I also had to make sure they were completely smooth so that the new panels will sit flush against them.

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    First of all, these little buggers had to go.

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    Trusty old step drill:D

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    Now onto the rest:p

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    Rear panel done, and as she currently stands, testing if everything works as it should before going under water.

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    This also needs to be fixed.

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    Countersunk - Much better:D

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    How much hardware can you fit into a mini itx case? I do not know yet, but this is what I will try and push into this build!
     
  11. p0Pe

    p0Pe gief cake?

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    Now, time for the cooling powerhouse.

    For this mod, I will take the pedestal from the S3 mercury and turn it into a watercooling powerhouse.

    This box will consist of:

    1 x CaseLabs Mercury S3 Pedestal
    2 x EK D5 pumps with acrylic top
    2 x EK 280 XTC radiators
    1 x EK RES X3 250 reservoir
    1 x Aquaero 5 XT
    4 x Corsair AF140 mm fans (temporary until corsair hopefully release some SP140 fans (Hint hint corsair)
    28 x various Bitspower fittings

    Now, I know that this thing is no where NEAR cost efficient, but I like the idea of a small box that can replace every need for radiators and pumps in your main case.

    Lights and fans will be controlled by the aquaero via a temperature sensor that is connected to one of the pumps. The aquaero is set to turn on the fans @35 percent power when the fluid reach 30 degrees, and slowly raise the fanpower as the temperature rises. The fans will be running at 100 percent when (if) the temperature reaches 37.5 degrees.

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    Now, lets jump straight into it. This drawing is made as a mockup for me to drill some holes into the bottom plate of the S3 case.

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    Taped to the bottom plate itself.

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    And the various holes marked out, and ready for drilling.

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    Pre drilled every hole.

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    And then finished all of them.

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    First hole cut all the way with a dremel. Now it needs to be sanded to a round finish.

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    Same procedure with the other side. On the left here, you can see the other hole that I already finished.

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    Both of the EK D5 pumps mounted.

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    And view from the bottom. I am thinking about making a cover for this. At the very least, the wires have to be sleeved, and routed in a proper fashion.

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    How they look in the case. The EK spinbay reservoir was initially meant to be in the box, but turned out to not fit duo to the radiators. So I had the choice of downsizing to two 240 mm radiators or using a RES X3 tube reservoir instead. The choice fell on the latter.

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    Picture of the workspace. Had to use a pair of chocolate bars to hold the radiators up while I worked on the mounts.

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    In this picture you can see the first mounting of the tube reservoir, and the tubing that would connect it to the first pump.

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    And the first mounting of the Aquaero. This is not done yet, and still needs some work to be perfect.

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    I also needed to cut some holes in the rear of the case to put the quick disconnectors. The easiest way to do this, is to mount the piece of tubing that needs to be guided to the wall, and use a laser of some sort to make a point where you can drill.

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    Now only one more hole to drill:D

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    And the finished rear panel with QD´s attached. I might put angles on them so that they do not go that far out back, but that also just makes it harder to connect the QD´s.

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    A pictuer of how the fittings in the case is connected to the two passtroughs.

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    As I said before, I wanted to make the radiator holders a tad more functional, so I decided to add a hot-swap function for the fans. To do this, I started out by drilling a 5 mm hole in the plate, and then filled to a size of 5.5*8 mm.

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    This is to accommodate a 3 pin fan header extension cord that will make it possible to swap out the fans without having to go into the box, and detach the fans from the aquaero.

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    The other side of the plug.

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    And with the extension soldered on, and sleeved.

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    This was done to both panels, and the radiators are then mounted directly on the panels. Fans will be mounted on the outer panel to make it even easier to swap them out, or clean the radiators.

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    To get to the rear of the box, the bottom plate can simply be detached. This was very helpful when I wanted to mount lights in the box. I wanted to mount two LED strips, one on each radiator, to light up the bottom of the box, to give the acrylic tops, and reservoir some "bling".

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    First, a piece of LED strip was soldered with two wires.

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    I then measured the correct distance between the two radiators, and cut the wires to length accordingly.

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    Tipping the wires with solder so it is easier to solder them to the other LED strip.

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    Finished rail with sleeving, and aquaero connector attached.

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    And mounted to the radiators. The position of this should give a good light to the pumps that is right next to it.

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    Quite happy with how this turned out.

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    Top of the box.

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    And another closeup of the fitting routing, and the wire that connects the two LED strips.

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    Front with the 3 different connectors (two fans, and the LED). The reservoir had to be moved up a bit for two reasons.
    1: to improve airflow between the two radiators.
    2: to better mount it to the case shell.

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    The fitting on the right is the intake fitting that will go directly to the reservoir.

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    How the intake fitting is mounted to the reservoir rear end.

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    Also tapped the EK reservoir clamps to M5 so that I could just screw them in from the top instead of having bolts and nuts dangling around.

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    One of the straight tubes had to be redone as it was to long. So first it was measured to the correct length, and then put into my 3D printed cutting jig.

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    And cutting the excess tube away. A rig like this is really helpful instead of having to try and saw straight from eye measure.

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    Sanding to a proper finish, and rounding the edges.

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    And voilá. Ready to be mounted.

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    Same procedure goes with this piece of tubing that was just a few mm to short.

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    The top of the box where the reservoir is mounted onto. The people who knows the CaseLabs pedestal´s might noticed that I replaced the standard frame top with the top of the S3 case itself. This was to get the functionality of the drop in bay, as well as being able to mount a standard CaseLabs top onto the pedestal which otherwise would not be possible. The plan is to use a standard top with a window in it for this pedestal, although I will have to see how it would fit in, as I might just do a window in a blank top with a design like the plate under it, as the window in the standard top is a tad big.

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    This of course needed a window of some sort, so I made a simple design and traced it into the metal.

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    The insides was then drilled, and the spaces between each hole cut away with a dremel.

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    Weapon of choice for the cleanup.

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    Rough cleaning done. Now onto the final run.

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    And done.

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    Final result. Though I need to paint the bare metal with some black paint.

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    Insides with lights on.

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    And a closeup. Still wondering what fluid to use with this, but so far I am leaning towards a light/clear blue.

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    Racing stripes :D

    All that is left to do on this box now is: make the fan mounts, sleeve the wires for the pumps, and make a hole for a power cord plug on the back that will go to the main case.

    Until then, feel free to drop by my facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/DesignsByHPS) or my website www.hps.dk to check out some other stuff I work on:) I enjoy every like I can get since that means that my stuff will reach more people :)
     
  12. C4B12

    C4B12 Minimalistic PC's

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    This project is going to be awesome. I want mooooar! :)
     
  13. Boorach

    Boorach Member

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    Delighted to see you have started another build pOPe. The quality of your logs are second to none highlighting your attention to detail and more importantly (for newbie modders like myself anyway) you put emphasis into the methods and tools you use to achieve such great results. Look forward to reading more.
     
  14. Ocelot

    Ocelot Member

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    I love the polygon look of side panels. Very unique but subtle too.

    14mm is absolutely massive though. Can you tell us the mass of the side panels from the CAD model?
     
  15. Nexxo

    Nexxo Queue Jumper

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    Love the lighting. Demands clear fluid.
     
  16. Hukkel

    Hukkel James' minion

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    Very nice and detailed update.

    Keep them coming!
     
  17. craig - toyoracer

    craig - toyoracer Member

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    Nice project with very good work do already. :thumb:

    Very good SATA cable management and the view into the cooling department is fantastic. :)
     
  18. OrangeClockwerk

    OrangeClockwerk Clockwerk Industries

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    hell yeah! I came across your post on Facebook, this is awesome, definitely gonna stay tuned to this one!
     
  19. jrs77

    jrs77 Well-Known Member

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    Nice idea for the "stealth" design on the panels and good craftsmanship there.

    However, would'nt it have been easier to take a ATX-case and install the watercoling-system into the same "box" as the other hardware? Sizewise it would'nt be any difference.
     
  20. blueonblack

    blueonblack New Member

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    Superb work as always my friend, and in what looks like very tight quarters too.

    I love the added touch of the fan extension wire. Those kinds of functionality details are awesome to me. You'll never see them when it's on display but the fact that it's there speaks of the mindset and skill of the builder.

    Well done and keep it up.
     

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